Small Claims ODR Volunteer Opportunity

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Did you know that Utah was the first state in the country to offer online dispute resolution (ODR) to litigants? The Utah State Courts are at the forefront of bringing new and innovative ways to deliver justice to the people of Utah. You can help us pioneer these efforts. We seek volunteer facilitators for our expanding ODR program in small claims matters throughout the state. Small claims cases include a wide range of context: disputes between landlords and tenants, homeowners and contractors, consumers and merchants, and roommates, and neighbors. Cases also include insurance disputes, auto accidents, service and repair claims, and debts.


ODR Volunteer


The role and opportunities for growth

ODR facilitators serve as impartial third-party neutrals who guide disputants through a negotiation process using an asynchronous, written chat platform. When parties reach resolution, the facilitator prepares a settlement agreement. When parties fail to settle, the facilitator prepares a summary of the case for the court. At times, facilitators also offer procedural information and, if they have the expertise, they may offer an evaluation about the merits of the case when it would be appropriate to do so.

This is an opportunity to:

  • Gain experience in alternative dispute resolution
  • Learn about court processes and rules
  • Participate in a cutting-edge program that delivers access to justice
  • Make a difference in people's lives by ensuring that they have an opportunity to to engage with the legal system


Who we are looking for

Preferably, volunteer candidates would have prior training and experience in mediation as well as familiarity with disputes in a small-claims context. Working with the ODR program gives volunteers a chance to apply and strengthen their conflict resolution skills while providing a valuable service to the community.

Volunteers are asked to commit at least one year of service for a few hours each week and be willing to check cases for activity on a regular basis.


Training and support is available

We will provide a comprehensive training, conducted using a virtual format at no cost to the volunteer. Depending on the volunteer's background, this training consists of 5-6 sessions lasting two or three hours each, spread out over several weeks.



ODR facilitators must have access to the internet using a web browser on a PC or laptop computer, have audio and video capabilities for the required virtual training, and be willing to use a court email account that uses Google Gmail.

If you have questions or want to volunteer for this program, please contact Nancy McGahey at


How to apply

Apply online by completing this form.